“All Eyes on Asia”: The Geopolitical State of Affairs in Northeast Asia Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic
Last month on April 10th, the Korea Society and the Japan Society hosted a virtual talk titled “Geopolitics of Coronavirus: Japan and Korea,” moderated by Dr. Joshua Walker from the Japan Society. The two main speakers, Dr. Sheila Smith, Senior Fellow for Japan Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations; and Dr. Stephen Noerper, Senior Director at The Korea Society, outlined how these two democratic nations in Northeast Asia have tackled the coronavirus pandemic to date, and the regional implications it may pose in the foreseeable future.
This report is written by Eleanor Hughes, Writer & Commentator, East Asian Affairs.
The ongoing Covid-19 crisis can probably be seen as a “black swan” not only for China but also the whole world. It is largely unpredictable but with severe consequences.
There is no doubt that China has suffered the most from this crisis economically, socially and politically. However, it is highly debatable whether China or the Communist Party is approaching an inflection point of possible breakup or imminent revolution.
“Nobody wants a trade war,” but the long-lasting trade conflict between the world’s two largest economies, the United States and China, just reached a truce after almost two years.
On 22 March 2018, President Donald Trump directed the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to start investigating China’s ‘unfair’ trade practices covered in Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974.
The outbreak of the 2019 novel coronavirus is so potentially impactful that we are devoting this entire edition to the epidemic, to an attempt to gauge its seriousness. Some stories are so big that it is hard to get your arms around them and this one definitely fits that category. Social media wasn't a factor during the 2003 SARS epidemic. The Chinese economy was a much smaller percentage of global GDP, and travel to and from China was far less common. So a simple comparison to SARS is not enough.